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Autumn Statement 2023: Usdaw calls for a new deal for workers and a retail recovery plan

Date: 16 October 2023 Retail trade union Usdaw has made a formal representation to HM Treasury for measures to be included in the 2023 Autumn Statement on 22 November. Following consultation with members, both directly and through their representatives in Usdaw, the union has developed policy suggestions to improve the lives of working people covering the following key areas:
  • Retail recovery plan to help our high streets get back on their feet and compete effectively with online retail.
  • Cost of living crisis continues to have a severe impact on most workers who desperately need help to make ends meet.
  • New deal for workers to make work pay and end the insecure employment that leaves too many struggling with the cost of living.
  • Universal credit and social security does not provide the safety net that many need and remains a disincentive to earn more.
Full Usdaw submission: www.usdaw.org.uk/AutumnBudget2023
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “The ongoing cost of living crisis remains a key challenge for the Autumn Statement. Rising prices, along with still very high energy and fuel costs, leave too many workers struggling to make ends meet. The Chancellor needs to look at lasting solutions to cost of living pressures with a new deal for workers. A new deal that makes work pay with a real living wage. Alongside this, we need an end to one-sided flexibility with a ban on zero and short hours contracts to provide much needed security of employment and income.
“Universal Credit remains universally discredited. Usdaw has consistently called for a fundamental overhaul of the Universal Credit system and how the Government supports the incomes of working people. We need social security that genuinely supports families and provides a proper safety net, which should be addressed in this Autumn Statement.
“For many years the retail sector, particularly the high street, has experienced significant and fundamental challenges. Covid and the cost-of-living crisis have both intensified these systemic problems. At the core of these issues is the uneven playing field between online and bricks and mortar retail, particularly regarding business rates. We need a commitment to a fundamental reform of business taxation affecting the retail sector, including the introduction of an online sales tax.
“This Autumn Statement is a chance for the Sunak Government to finally show that they are listening, but we are not confident that this sleaze-ridden and incompetent Government will offer the change our members so desperately need.”
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest trade union with over 350,000 members. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members 
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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The official website of the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers